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Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Committee on Educational Survey



  • Existence: 1947 January - 1949

Historical Note

The Committee on Educational Survey, also known as the Lewis Committee, was appointed in January 1947 by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Faculty to review the Institute's educational policies and procedures.

"The committee was instructed to reexamine the principles of education that had served as a guide to academic policy at MIT for almost ninety years, and to determine whether they were applicable to the conditions of a new era emerging from social upheaval and the disasters of war. The committee examined the educational mission and philosophy, the undergraduate professional education, sponsored research and the organization of the faculty. Among the main recommendations was that MIT should emphasize four general areas of education and research and that each area should be organized as a separate school with its own dean. The four areas were: engineering, science, architecture and planning, and humanities and social sciences. Allied to the work of the main committee were two additional groups: the Committee on General Education, which examined how to provide undergraduates with broad and more effective cultural training and recommended a general strengthening of the curriculum and required subjects in the humanities and social sciences; and the Committee on Staff Environment, which looked at how to provide the Institute with an improved environment for effective teaching and creative research."

In November 1949 and in subsequent years, many recommendations were implemented by the Institute, including the reorganization of the faculty committee structure to provide better planning and supervision of the undergraduate program, and the approval of a revised and expanded program of general education. The committee consisted of Professors Warren K. Lewis, chair; John R. Loofbourow, secretary; Ronald H. Robnett; C. Richard Soderberg; and Julius A. Stratton.

The Committee on General Education was chaired by Thomas K. Sherwood and the Committee on Staff Environment was chaired by W. Rupert Maclaurin.

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

C. Richard Soderberg papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MC-0023
Scope and Contents of the Collection The papers of C. Richard Soderberg document his education through student notes from schools in Sweden, including the Chalmers Institute of Technology, and material on his MIT thesis. Extensive subject files describe his activities as a member of the MIT faculty, including participation on committees, and his involvement with industry and professional organizations. There are copies of his lecture notes, as well as a set of his published and unpublished writings. There is a large file of...
Dates: 1914 - 1979

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Committee on Educational Survey records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: AC-0124
Scope and Contents of the Collection The collection consists of the files maintained by Lynwood Bryant, aide to the committee, and contains numerous drafts and revisions of the final report, both typed and handwritten. It also contains correspondence and memoranda that document interactions between the members of the committee on planning, researching, and writing the final report. The final version of the report, titled "Report of the Committee on Educational Survey," focuses on five areas: the development of an educational...
Dates: 1930 - 1950

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Office of the President, records of Karl Taylor Compton and James Rhyne Killian

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: AC-0004
Abstract The collection consists of records created while Karl Taylor Compton (president 1930-1948) and James Rhyne Killian (president 1948-1959) served in the position of president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). It contains correspondence, reports, memoranda, and committee materials about the activities of the presidents and their staff, the definition and evolution of policies, and the administration of the Institute. Records document Compton's early efforts to strengthen the...
Dates: 1930 - 1959

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